Stranger Things' Gaten Matarazzo Discusses His Rare Genetic Disorder: 'I Need a Lot of Surgery'
Gaten Matarazzo, the young actor who plays Dustin on the Netflix series Stranger Things, is opening up about his battle with the rare genetic disorder cleidocranial dysostosis.
“It’s a condition where you’re born without your collarbones,” the 14-year-old actor said during an appearance on The Jonathan Ross Show (via EW). “I don’t have any. It affects your facial growth, your skull growth, your teeth — that’s why I don’t have any [teeth], these are fake right here. I have teeth, but they’re all baby teeth. I need a lot of surgery.”
“I have a really mild case and a lot of people have it much worse than I do,” Gaten added. “I feel like putting it into the show has really raised awareness for it. And I’m lucky that mine is very mild, but now that it’s in my genes… it’s usually passed on by genes, it wasn’t for me, it just happened. So now that it’s in my genes, I have a 50 percent chance of passing it down in my genes and it could be much worse for them.”
Gaten says that the creators of Stranger Things decided to make his condition a part of the show and he is glad to showcase it on the series.
“I just wanna raise awareness for it and let people know it’s not something that they should be afraid of showing,” he said.